Commission Considers How to Reduce Burgeoning National Debt

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

There's growing concern about the national debt: currently a gulp-inducing $13 trillion... and counting. President Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform is tasked with coming up with proposals to begin solving the problem later this year. We speak with Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee, and a member of the bipartisan deficit-reduction commission.


Senator Judd Gregg

Produced by:

Elizabeth Ross

Comments [4]

Bob Kast from New Jersey

Roger - I hate to be cynical, but I think Gregg knows exactly what he is doing and knows it is indefensible. He does it because he knows he can get away with it. Imagine him saying that “discretionary” spending during the Bush years was constant. The deficit went from a surplus of hundreds of billions to more than a trillion in the red. If it wasn’t discretionary spending that did that, then how can you justify fixing it by making cuts in discretionary spending? The media does not challenge him. Remember years after the Iraq war had been going on and the media were collectively saying that they dropped the ball? That 9/11 so shook them that they did not do the investigative journalism that they should have. I feel that they have not changed. The Sherrod case illustrates that. The ACORN videos and rush to judgment shows it also. Gregg’s interview is another example.

Jul. 29 2010 10:46 AM
Roger Hockett from Seattle

While listening to Senator Gregg's rationalizations I had two thoughts:
First, it did not bother him that $1 Trillion of the debt came from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In Paul Kennedy's book on The Rise and Fall of Great Powers, the costs of foreign wars is one of the reasons most great powers eventually fall.

Second, I just just finished a chapter in The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan where he recounts many statements made by President Herbert Hoover in 1930-32. At the inauguration of FDR, Hoover was asked by the press what else can be done to help the country. Hoover said "Nothing else can be done. We have done everything possible there is to do." Certainly is fortunate that FDR did not listen to Hoover.

I think Senator Gregg lives in a glass bowl of Republican ideology and he simply doesn't have any knowledge of how persons outside of the Republican philosophy live. Senator Gregg, you may wish to channel President Hoover, you seem to have a lot in common with him.

Jul. 28 2010 01:47 PM
Bob Kast from New Jersey

I am very disappointed with this interview. First of all, he never mentioned the fact that our military budget is greater than all other industrialized countries COMBINED. That is off the table? And by the way, he said we were in 2 wars because we were attacked. No, neither Iraq or Afghanistan attacked us. Our reason to invade Afghanistan is weak. It is unconscionable that we invaded Iraq.

The worst part of this is Judd's apparent hypocritical opinions. He wants to cut spending without mentioning that doing so directly results in job losses. He seems to think it is for free. Any cuts to states mean teacher, police, etc job losses. He seems not to care that we are in a recession that that will just make it worse. On the other hand, he is FOR extending the Bush tax cuts ONLY FOR THE RICH. People making over $250,000 will not lose their job and won't even change their spending habit if their taxes are raised by a few percent. In that context he mentions the recession and the poor rich people will suffer and somehow make the recession worse? How??

The worst part is you should have known his opinions before the interview and should have questioned him on it.

Also, he mentioned the healthcare law as "growing government" and supposedly the deficit, when the CBO has estimated that it would greatly reduce the deficit.

All in all a missed opportunity to expose the hypocrisy of his opinions.

Jul. 28 2010 11:33 AM

What a cruel joke. -with Democrat's help...
The Republicans set the pace for the National and State Governments' financial insolvency by spending without providing adequate revenue to pay for it.
Now it's all about cutting spending on domestic programs...?!!
-and STILL they won't allow for the Bush tax cuts to expire so that the rich, (and corporations please...) can start paying their share again!

PS. This would be the SECOND generation to face a reduced standard of living.

Jul. 28 2010 10:07 AM

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